By Shelly Anderson
If you’re hoping social media will go away, it won’t. And don’t make the mistake of considering its use as strictly for the under-30 crowd either. Yes, 92 percent of that age group is on Facebook, Twitter and the like, but 57 percent of those 50 to 64 years of age and even 38 percent of those over 65 are also engaged on at least one social network, according to an article on FastCompany.com.
Much of the hiring discussion today centers on the future of recruiting and sourcing, focusing on Twitter, Facebook and other popular social media platforms. Social media is changing the way people interact with each other and employers. According to the CareerXRoads’ 2013 Source of Hires Report (based on staffing-leadership survey results), hiring-trend projections for 2013 indicate a 17.3 percent increase in hiring of full-time positions in the United States. But before you jump into the social media frenzy to recruit talent, let’s consider several key points:
- Without a website, you won’t get anywhere.
- Don’t jump into the fray thinking social media for employers is cheap.
- Any social media involvement should be based on a social media policy and communications plan.
- Start with the end in mind.
Before You Start the Car
Do you have a website that allows you to establish your organization’s online identity? Is it functional? Is it visually appealing, consistent and professionally designed so it’s a positive experience for the end user?
Since branding begins on your home page, your website is a perfect place to begin recruitment efforts. Branding should be consistent through every possible touch point, so if your “careers” page differs significantly in feel or layout from other pages on your website, seekers will sense a disconnect.
Here are some essential components to have on your website:
- Offer easy access to end users to your “careers” link on your home page.
- Maintain your company logo and color schemes throughout the website.
- Restate your core company values or vision statements on your career page.
- Offer clear information on your careers page about current job openings and instructions on applying.
- Identify your employee value proposition. This defines the type of work the candidate will be doing, the environment in which he’ll be exposed, the management style within the organization, its culture, and the benefits he’ll receive from being part of your organization.
Social media can’t take the place of other forms of sourcing techniques, as you’ll still need to advertise and drive traffic to your website. Just be sure your communications, brand and online appearance are consistent.
Preparing for the Road Trip
Facebook has trumped the U.S. population with its number of members, and Twitter is growing at an incredible rate. Annual LinkedIn research conducted in 2010 through 2012 show that at any given time, 10 percent to 20 percent of the fully employed workforce is comprised of active candidates seeking new jobs, while 80 percent to 90 percent are passive candidates. As an employer, you should take the time to understand the media, develop a road map that uses each platform to its best advantage, and then experiment.